This article originally appeared in the “The Horse's Mouth” magazine which is free to FRT VIP Club Members.
You will have often seen the advice “Don’t bet more than you can afford to lose” well this should be etched on your brain and engraved on your wallet.
The way to ensure you never use money to gamble with that shouldn’t be used for that purpose is to set up a working betting bank, made up only of money you can afford to lose, specifically for gambling purposes.
Your betting bank is your life blood and knowing how to manage it correctly is vital to your success when betting on horses because, without a betting bank, you are on a slippery slope to failure.
Win bets should be your main focus and my recommendation is that your bets are 1% of your betting bank (although if you are confident in your selections and maintain a good strike rate this can be increased I calculate my Premium Tip bets at 5% of my bank); for example; if you have a betting bank of £100 you are looking at £1 stakes, a £1000 bank gives you £10 stakes.
You should review your betting bank on a regular basis, at least once a week (personally I review mine daily), and divide the total by 100 to set your new stakes, i.e. if the betting bank has gone up your stakes go up, if they go down your stakes go down.
Using your betting bank in this way you can ride a losing streak, and no matter who you are and how good your selection method losing runs do happen. A many years ago (before the launch of FRT in 2008) I hit a losing streak of 22 losers on the trot, these were all straight win bets based on 1% of my bank and though it was frustrating even without recalculating my betting bank I could have had another 78 losers without being wiped out.
If I had been inexperienced after such a run I might have changed my selection criteria or even taken some time off from betting, but I didn’t because I know that losing streaks are inevitable, annoying yes, even soul destroying but inevitable, and even after that 22 bet losing run using this tried and tested method of money management it only took a few weeks to recover and build my bank up again to above the level it had been before the losing run began.
Since revising the services for Free Racing Tips in September 2018 I have used separate betting banks for each one and 1 point for Premium Tips is different to 1 point for Little Beauty etc.
For those of you that like each way betting place your bets at 0.5% each way, for example if you bet £10 to win you should go £5 each way.
If you like multiples or exotic bets such as a Patent, Lucky 15 or god forbid a Goliath never place more than 1% of your bank on the bet, bets such as these are a riskier proposition although if all legs do win the rewards can be high.
Record keeping is vital, I suggest you keep track of every bet in either a spreadsheet or a written ledger, showing your profit or loss on each bet. Review this at least once a week (I do it daily) and recalculate your unit stake at 1% of the current bank.
Some people have told me that my methods take the fun out of betting, maybe they do for some but it is more fun for me to reduce the risk of being wiped out by a series of bets and to maximise the good runs.
By Keith Bond
Chief horse racing advisor and writer for Free Racing Tips